Monday, May 24, 2010

Panoche Road Race - Masters 45+ 4/5

This was a race I was hoping to do well in, and I found that I had a number of teammates registered in my category. Several of the team were wondering if they would get up the climb, and I was among them. It isn’t a huge climb and it stairsteps up, giving you a chance to recover. But still, if the little climber types decide to hit it hard, all of us big guys tend to get dropped. This time, none of the climbers went all out. I made it over on the tail end of the group and was never in danger of getting dropped again. I felt that the pace was not very race like, and on occasion, I went to the front to push it a bit. However, when I did that, someone would attack and I would have to chase them down. So, I just sat in and waited for the finish.
I think there were about 25 of us left in the lead group as we approached the last 1 K. Our strategy had been for me to lead out Miles and Mike for the sprint, and I would have loved to do that, but I had gotten myself sort of trapped in the middle of the pack at that point. I wanted to move up, but so did everyone else, and I am not the greatest yet at doing that. As we came up to the 200M line, the group was hesitating and I really wanted to go. At about 150 – 175 M they went and I tried to as well. Still, some guy pulled right in front of me and I had to sit back down and wait a moment to restart my sprint. Then I was off and the way was clear. We were bearing down on the finish line and I saw a photographer crouched in the road, directly in my line. I couldn’t tell how far the line was and I was still about 5M back from the lead at that point. I felt that the guy in the road had his lens focused on the leaders who were on the other side of the road. I really thought that I was going to crash into him, and my fear made me yell at him. Unfortunately, the heat of the moment caused me to yell at him profanely. Fortunately, I did get his attention and he jumped out of the way just in time as I was cruising for the line at top speed. I was moving up in the group quickly, but because of the confusion with the photographer, I couldn’t tell where I crossed the line. I was embarrassed by my profanity, but it just came out. The results did not get posted for quite a while and the other guys were ready to leave. I agreed, in part out of my embarrassment.
This morning I saw the results. Disqualified. I e-mailed the promoter and apologized for my poor language. I also apologize to the team. I will work to make sure it doesn’t happen again.
The promoter was very kind, and he informed me that if I could have maintained decorum, I finished 4th! Oh well.


Michele said...

Bob, maybe you can purchase some kind of "profanity screener" that will automatically translate these words that fly out involuntarily into some pretty french words or something?

Dennis the Mennis said...

Wow, that's a kind of funny story! Sorry you got DSQ'd Bob, but it was very cool of them to let you know you'd have taken 4th... I hope they DSQ'd the photgrapher! ;-)

Satin Matt said...

G*d D$mn m*&her f&^%ing sons of b*(#$es!

I think you need to learn to be profane in a foreign language Bob! That way you can express yourself and no one will know.

Great job coming in 4th in a race with a climb. You're progression is impressive. I see a big win in your future.

Winona said...

I knew I was ignorant of the road racing world but this comes as a surprise. If they cared about language at cyclocross or mountain biking races, half the field would be banned (including me)! My hats off to you for being humble and apologizing for something I don't think you should have to be sorry for. Well done.

Jim Langley said...

What a great story, Bob. Sounds like you rode a really smart race. I wonder if it's okay to shove photographers out of your way - or holler at them after the race? Seems rider safety should be in the equation somewhere. Maybe you would get DQ'd just for yelling at them to get out of the way, too, not sure. Anyway, if I were you, I'd put this down as a hard-fought 4th. That's only 3 ticks from the win! Super job, Bob!!

Tim said...

Oh my God!! I am so sorry to have ruined your finish! I am Tim Allen, the photographer that was in your way at the finish line. Please accept my deepest apologies. Don't worry about the profanity, I would have said the same thing if I were coming down the straight for the finish line, and, some idiot with a camera was in the way. I truly did, barely get out of the way too. Please accept a free photo from me as it's the least I can do.

Cheers, Tim Allen

Heater said...

Way to get to the front in the heat of battle!!! 4th place!!!!
Stay the course, all your hard mental and physical efforts are paying off. I see multiple wins in you future. :)